Simmons and Company to offer 5,000-piece antique tool collection

RICHMOND, Mo. — Simmons and Company Auctioneers, Inc. of Richmond, Mo., has announced that it will offer the lifetime tool collection of Roland "Rollie" Ambuehl of Highland, Ill., at public auction over three days, April 16-18, 2009. This outstanding event will be held at the Ray County Veterans Building located at 312 Clark Street in Richmond, Mo. Auction registration and preview will begin at noon on Wednesday, April 15, 2009. Each day’s auction will start promptly at 9 a.m.

Mr. Ambuehl is a member of The Hardware Companies Kollectors Klub (THCKK) and a charter member of the Mid-West Tool Collectors Association (M-WTCA). "Rollie," as he is known to his many friends, simply loved tools and was an avid collector for over 30 years. He never sold, though—he only collected. Attending auctions was a big part of his life and it was there that he found most of his treasures. There never was a tool he didn’t admire, though planes were among his absolute favorites. Upon finding one, it was taken home, lovingly taken apart and, if necessary, repaired, then carefully cleaned and stored. This entire tool collection is extremely clean and well cared for.

With some 5,000 pieces, including over 1,000 planes, and comprising approximately 1,800 lots, Mr. Ambuehl’s collection is absolutely one of the largest ever to cross the Simmons and Company auction block. Space precludes a complete listing, but the Ambuehl collection features tools from such vintage hardware companies and store brands as Stanley, Simmons, Shapleigh, Winchester, HSB & Co., Keen Kutter, Diamond Edge, Blue Grass, Buffum, OVB, Van Camp, Oak Leaf, Crusader, Sargent, Siegley, Ohio Tool, Millers Falls, Fulton, Lakeside, Union Tool, Craftsman, L.S. Starrett, Rev-O-Noc, Yankee, Berylco, Shelton, Eclipse, Firestone, plus numerous other popular and collectible marks.

The Ambuehl collection contains, among other things, an extensive array of Stanley tools, including a comprehensive assortment of Stanley planes. One of the auction’s highlights will, undoubtedly, be on Saturday when the highly coveted No. 1 Stanley "Sweetheart" plane (Lot #527) goes up for sale. In addition to the dozens of Stanley planes, a number of Stanley Gage, Victor, Bailey Tool and Defiance planes, many of which are in the original boxes, will also be auctioned. Also crossing the block will be low-angle, bull nose, and aluminum planes, bits and braces, chisels, drills, squares, gauges, levels, rules, spoke shaves, scrapers, routers, tape measures and many more Stanley tools too numerous to mention.

The sale of this collection represents countless hours of diligent collecting and care. With lots of great, usable tools of every description, plus many unusual, interesting and hard-to-find tools and tool-related items, this auction will be a buying bonanza for both new and veteran collectors and dealers alike. In order to fully appreciate the scope and magnitude of this auction, be sure to request a catalog in advance and make plans to attend this truly unique event.

For additional information on this auction, including a complete catalog and color pictures of every lot on the block, visit Live Internet bidding (and pre-bidding) will also be available for this event on Proxibid at

For information on absentee bidding, contact Rilla Simmons, Simmons and Company, at 816-776-2936.